White and red striped parasols on a beach.

5 winter sun destinations you can reach in 5 hours or less

Is winter over yet? No? Never mind – check out our guide to the best winter sun destinations around Europe, to find that sweet sunshine even without leaving the continent.

3 min read

Winter can often feel like it’s dragging out, with rainy days and never-ending darkness leaving us dreaming of warmer climates. It’s bliss to get away, and the good news it doesn’t need to be expensive or take forever to get there! If you’ve ever wondered where the best places to travel to during the winter months were, then wonder no more. Here’s where to get your winter travel fix in five hours or less.

1. Málaga

Malaga enjoys more sunny days than its surrounding regions, like nearby Córdoba, thanks to its position with mountains in the north and the sea to the south. Why not start off by exploring the beautiful white village of Mijas, one of the most picturesque places in all of Andalucia, followed by lunch on the beach. While you’re there, try the famous ‘platos de los montes de Málaga’, a dish of delicious cured meats, local sausages and fried potatoes. While a meal like this might be too heavy to enjoy during the summer, winter makes it the perfect time to indulge.

Flight time from:London – 2hr 55 minParis – 2hr 30 minMadrid – 1hr 15 minRome – 2hr 40 minBerlin - 3hr 25 min

2. South of France

The French Riviera is packed in summer—so skip the crowds and head there in winter. Sausset-les-Pins, a small town to the west of Marseille that’s less crowded is among some of the more affordable beach destinations to travel throughout winter in comparison to the nearby Cote d’Azur or world-famous St Tropez. For a taste of the big city, head to Marseille – a lively port town famous for its African influences.

Flight time from:London - 1hr 55minParis - 1hr 20minMadrid - 1hr 45minRome - 1hr 10minBerlin - 2hr 15min

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3. Madeira

This small island is closer to Africa than to Europe, although still only four hours’ flying time from London and Paris. Go there for the sub-tropical climate, volcanic landscapes (including natural lava-heated swimming pools) and of course, the world-famous wines. Funchal – the capital city – also offers stunning botanic gardens, a scenic cable car ride and plenty of charming street art.

Flight time from:London - 3hr 50minParis - 3hr 30minMadrid - 4hr 05minBarcelona - 4hr 25minBerlin - 4hr 45min

4. Croatia

With its gorgeous beaches, Croatia has become a classic summer hotspot that perhaps gets slightly overlooked in winter. Why not visit Hvar and take a dip in The Adriatic Sea? Often known as the ‘island of lavender’, Hvar is home to a 13th-century port and a hilltop fortress. If you’re feeling a winter chill while you’re there, head to one of the many hot springs, which stay toasty all year round.

Flight time from:London - 4hr 15min to DubrovnikParis – 3hr 15min to DubrovnikMadrid - 2hr 50min to ZagrebRome - 2hr 15min to SplitBerlin - 4hr 45min to Dubrovnik

5. Malta

Even though it’s only 58 miles south of Sicily, Malta feels like an entirely different world. The island is a treasure-trove of UNESCO World Heritage sites, including the baroque-walled capital city Valletta, and the country’s incredible 6,000 year old Megalithic Temples. As well as this, it’s packed with plenty of ideal spots for snorkelling and cave diving.

Flight time from:London – 3hr 10 minParis – 2hr 40minMadrid – 2hr 40minRome – 1hr 25minBerlin - 2hr 50min

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Plan your escape with N26

Ready for that winter sun destination? Right now, N26 You, Business You and Metal customers can make use of the exclusive N26 partner discounts to get cheaper trips, such as up to 10% cashback when you make a purchase with your N26 card on Booking.com. For excursions and day trips, You and Metal customers can buy tickets for sightseeing and tours through GetYourGuide to receive a 15% discount. To discover these discounts and more, head to the Partner Offers section of your N26 app for full T&C’s.

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